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Dec 2011 Molecular therapy : the journal of the American Society of Gene Therapy

Systemic administration of combinatorial dsiRNAs via nanoparticles efficiently suppresses HIV-1 infection in humanized mice.


Zhou J, Neff CP, Liu X, Zhang J, Li H, Smith DD, Swiderski P, Aboellail T, Huang Y, Du Q, Liang Z, Peng L, Akkina R


We evaluated the in vivo efficacy of structurally flexible, cationic PAMAM dendrimers as a small interfering RNA (siRNA) delivery system in a Rag2(-)/-γc-/- (RAG-hu) humanized mouse model for HIV-1 infection. HIV-infected humanized Rag2-/-γc-/- mice (RAG-hu) were injected intravenously (i.v.) with dendrimer-siRNA nanoparticles consisting of a cocktail of dicer substrate siRNAs (dsiRNAs) targeting both viral and cellular transcripts. We report in this study that the dendrimer-dsiRNA treatment suppressed HIV-1 infection by several orders of magnitude and protected against viral induced CD4(+) T-cell depletion. We also demonstrated that follow-up injections of the dendrimer-cocktailed dsiRNAs following viral rebound resulted in complete inhibition of HIV-1 titers. Biodistribution studies demonstrate that the dendrimer-dsiRNAs preferentially accumulate in peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs) and liver and do not exhibit any discernable toxicity. These data demonstrate for the first time efficacious combinatorial delivery of anti-host and -viral siRNAs for HIV-1 treatment in vivo. The dendrimer delivery approach therefore represents a promising method for systemic delivery of combinations of siRNAs for treatment of HIV-1 infection.

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